We were very excited to come to Khao Sok for alot of different reasons. The main one being the trek we planned to do through the rainforest for 2 days, staying in a raft house on a lake in the jungle. This trek involved seeing a few water falls, hiking a mountain, canoeing, and exploring a cave. The main highlight for us however was that the gibbons (monkeys) apparently call so loud at night that you don't really sleep but listen to the sounds of the jungle.
I'm sure that would have been great... When we arrived at our hut the lady working there immediately tried to sell us the tour, but it was alot more money than we expected so we decided to do a bit more research first. It took no time at all to realize we almost spent alot on nothing. Apparently at this time of year almost everything in the park is closed due to flash flooding. We talked to people at the entrance of the park who told us resorts sell the tour, put you in a truck, and take you somewhere else completely. Needless to say that did't pan out.
We instead spent the remainder of our first day walking around the area and trying to come up with a new game plan. We ended up deciding to buy park passes in the morning and walk to the only 2 sights that were open, both waterfalls. While walking around we saw bugs the size of birds, and creepy crawlies I hope to never see again. We walked through a few jungle paths that were a little hard to enjoy... Given that we were so on edge about the sounds comming from all sides. That night from our hut we could hear all kinds of noises and monkey calls, so not a total loss afterall.
We planned to be at the park gates at 8am to get the most out of the day, as well as the fact that the majority of life is best seen morning and after dark. We actually woke up on time... but the monsoon outside sent us right back to bed. Who knew there would be so much rain in the rainforest? While laying around waiting for the rain to let up we couldn't hear anything but water flowing and alot of loud thumping on the roof. When we finally worked up the nerve to investigate the sounds figuring it must be wild animals comming for us, we found out that the rambutan trees were dropping there fruits and we were safe, for now.
By 11am we finally decided to venture into the rain, since it wasn't going to stop, and we left. Getting into the park we were both jumpy to say the least. All things that we read said to be very careful because the park is home to tigers, cobras, pythons, scorpions, and leopards... to name a few. The first point we planned to hike to was 3 kilometers away and should have taken us about an hour to get to. We made it 15 minutes in before the unimaginable happened.
I (Sam) looked down at my leg and there was a leach on my ankle. Dean was up ahead of me and heard a lot of screaming from behind him. He ran to my rescue thinking I must be surrounded by vicious predators. Alot of flailing and sobbing later it was time to get the h*ll out of there. "Dean can you carry me?" Needless to say he didn't. It was down pouring still and the ground was one big puddle full of these horrifying creatures out to get me so I ran. Along the way Dean had to help me get a few more off, turns out your speed doesnt matter.
The pass was good for 24 hours so we figured we could probably go for the night safari to at least see some of the park. Between my Phobia of leaches and Deans Fear for all wild animals this didn't pan out either. We decided to cut the trip a bit short and just leave in the morning. Although we didn't do the things we planned we still had a good time. It was nice to be up in the mountains were it was alot cooler, sometimes too cold, and we saw alot of plants and bugs we never knew existed.
Too sum it all up, the area is beautiful however... There are too many bugs, too many wild animals, too much rain, and the food was very expensive. From this experience we learned we love the idea of the jungle but maybe beaches and city are more our thing.